Ludum Dare 23
Archive for the ‘LD #23’ Category
I know it’s kind of late to be doing this, but maybe someone will see a game they missed!
Greed Wars – [has web version] A 2D RTS that takes place on a wrapped radial surface (around a tiny world!). Very fast, kinetic, frenetic strategy action. There are many ways to totally beat up the CPU opponent but highly engrossing and one to watch- if multiplayer is in this one’s future, it’s going to be a blast. Great presentation.
ANT SURF HERO: THE SURFENING – [has web version] A heart-wrenching love story.
My Little Dungeon – [has web version] Stunning presentation- beautiful graphics, some of my favorite music from LD23 and very heavy, mildly anxiety-inducing decisions to be made- do you want to spend more time and resources keeping your hero safe, or gamble and set him up against some strong monsters in order to make him tougher quicker?
Planet ZOOB – A really cute little arcade-style game where you are a creature defending a small planet. The visual design is very cute and the way music ties into it is quite clever.
It’s a tiny world – An addictive tile-based mini-RPG with some intriguing puzzle aspects in its magic system. Like an even lite-er Desktop Dungeons! I’d love to see what it would be like a little more fleshed out, but I’m just always a sucker for feature creep.
The Underground Court – [has web version] Caranha worked really hard to review a lot of games this LD! I see his avatar on almost every single page I go to. I think the resource management in this is a bit interesting and the nonlinear gameplay in the brand of design he showcases here is nice to see. I’ll be following his future endeavors for sure.
Conquest of the Cyber-Ovine – A top down action RPG. The game-world is randomly generated islands on top of water (or, in other levels, ice or lava) and you must level up to proceed to further levels. Scattered throughout each world is a wealth of equipment that is all upgradeable, such as an item that lets you teleport into the distance to move quickly or escape, a bat that knocks enemies further away as it levels up, et cetera. I really enjoy the concept and execution of it!
Here’s a screenshot of a simple autotiler I made for making level production easier (every single grass/dirt tile there is, at first, the same block- then they’re all reskinned). I’m aiming to make a lot of ‘base’ rooms which are altered in a lot of different ways- like numerous pieces of the landscape having a chance of not appearing, or the level being horizontally flipped. There’s also an alternate set of tiles for the tops of platforms (cobblestone), and areas with liquid will have either water or lava, depending on the context of the world.
I’m aiming to get a build ready for the jam, now, as I’m really sleepy and don’t think I could wrap what I have done so far up quickly enough for the competition.
For its first release, there will probably only be the ‘wildcard’ gameplay mode which focuses on every screen having a surprising mish-mash of content rather than clustering groups of levels into themed sets, like “snowy set”. The player will also be able to spend ability points between every few levels, as opposed to after boss fights, as I plan to eventually implement in a more feature complete and polished version. I’ll probably just restrict the amount of bosses in the first release to one at the very end of the game.
Some more graphic work to show off!
The main character sprite was redesigned to better match the style of its rendering on the album cover. (If the album intrigues you I posted the whole thing in an embed in this update.) I won’t clog the tubes with every single enemy animation and stuff, I’m just posting these to show what the enemies will kinda be like.
I made a little, basic pixel font for the game! The first time you start, you input your name and select what kind of gender pronouns you would prefer. I’m digging into the engine work for normal gameplay now. I’m starting to wonder if I’ll be able to pull an all-nighter and finish this by the deadline or if I’ll have to let it overextend and become a jam entry. I’d feel a little disappointed if I had to make it a jam entry since this is my first participation and all, but eh.
A bit ago I finished my game’s small 4-piece soundtrack. I don’t have any formal music training so it’s not mind-blowing, but I’m pretty happy with how it turned out over all. If you’re interested but just want to hear the best piece, I’m most fond of the boss music that plays at 1:27.
Oh, and obviously I’ve decided on the title “The Pioneer”. The protagonist is some kind of supernatural entity that is carving away evil monsters from worlds so that his people can live on them.
Each set of levels has a unified palette, which is chosen from an array using this method. Depending how far into the game session the player is, there are more permutations to levels which make them more challenging- by the second set of levels, slippery surfaces and lava will may appear, unless the player chooses either the “challenging” or “wildcard” mode- in which case anything could show up at the very beginning.
I have also decided on three weapons- there’s the basic sword, which is swiped in a 90 degree arc like Link’s sword from 2D Zelda games, a lance which is longer but only goes straight, like a whip from Castlevania, and then a bow and arrow which is a standard range weapon which requires ammo. The player can upgrade one of these at the end of every set of levels, increasing the selected weapon’s damage output by a single point. There are other things to upgrade as well of course!
After wasting a whole 24 hours doing nothing, I’ve started work on my project! I’ve just done some graphics so far.
It’s going to be a retro graphics platformer, the absolute most boring kind of indie game to see! I’m using a lot of randomization elements in it, and each level will be a ‘tiny world’. I know it clearly appears I am going the easy, safe route with the graphics, because I… uh, am. But that will let me focus on the neat stuff!
The central idea is the levels and enemies within them are highly randomized, and are generated via a seed the player supplies. I think it will be fun for people to try different seeds, then have their friends play through the same ones.
Every level, enemies will get a little harder, and every 10 levels there will be a boss fight. The player will be able to choose how many levels long they want it to be (or endless) at the seed entry prompt. A per-seed high score list would be really cool but would probably take too long to stuff into the first release (assuming I can even get this to a presentable state in less than 24 hours!)